Aelfgyva: The Mysterious Lady of the Bayeux Tapestry

Who was the mysterious Ælfgyva in the Bayeux Tapestry?

One of the most intriguing of these puzzles centers upon a scene in that initial segment of the Tapestry treating with Earl Harold Godwinson’s famed and controversial visit to the court of the Norman duke

The Knight, the Hermit, and the Pope: Some Problematic Narratives of Early Crusading Piety

Peter the Hermit - First Crusade

A much more general question, one that extends beyond the geographic confines of the Limousin and the period between 27 December 1095 and 15 August 1096 is why an individual choose to confront any of these difficulties at all. Why did they go?

Miracula, Saints’ Cults and Socio-Political Landscapes: Bobbio, Conques and post-Carolingian society

Medieval depiction of the martyrdom of St. Faith with a red hot poker

Despite the centrality of monastic sources to debates about social and political transformation in post-Carolingian Europe, few studies have approached the political and economic status of monasteries and their saints’ cults in this context, to which this thesis offers a comparative approach.

Signs of Power. Manorial Demesnes in Medieval Iceland

King Eric II Magnusson of Noway & Iceland (1268 - 1299)

An important aspect of medieval Icelandic social organization, namely the manor, has been neglected in previous research, and very little research has been undertaken comparing Icelandic manorial organization with other regions. This article focuses on one aspect of manorial organization, namely the manorial demesne or central farm of the manor.

The Danish Conquest: 1000 Years

13th century depiction of Svein Forkbeard

1013-1014 sees the 1000th anniversary of a successful invasion of England – and not many people seem to have noticed.

Women’s Devotional Bequests of Textiles in the Late Medieval English Parish Church, c.1350-1550

Medieval woman reading

My investigation is set within the context of the current high level of interest in the workings of the late medieval parish.

Ten Things You May Not Have Noticed in the Bayeux Tapestry

Ten Things You May Not Have Noticed in the Bayeux Tapestry

The designer of the Bayeux Tapestry also included little details that might be missed by the casual viewer. Here are ten images to take a second look at!

Enemy and Ancestor: Viking Identities and Ethnic Boundaries in England and Normandy, c.950 – c.1015

The Bayeux Tapestry and the Vikings

This thesis is a comparison of ethnicity in Viking Age England and Normandy. It focuses on the period c.950-c.1015, which begins several generations after the initial Scandinavian settlements in both regions.

Herleva of Falaise, Mother of William the Conqueror

Normandy

Legends states the young Duke Robert I of Normandy was on the walkway of his castle at Falaise looking down at the river and discovered a beautiful young girl washing clothes. He asked to see her and she became his mistress. She would become the mother of William the Conqueror.

Britain and the Beginning of Scotland

King Cinaed mac Ailpín (Kenneth Mac Alpin - King of the Picts

Until recently it was generally held that Scotland first began to take shape with a union of Picts and Scots under Cinaed mac Ailpín, who died in 858.

Could Duke Phillip the Good of Burgundy have owned the Bayeux tapestry in 1430?

Miniature, illustration from page 1 of Les Chroniques de Hainaut. The Duke of Burgundy, Philip the Good, and his son Charles (later to be known as Charles the Bold), being paid homage by the author of the Chronicles of Hainault. Van der Weyden's only surviving miniature.

An entry in the Inventory of the Bayeux cathedral treasury records that in 1476 the church owned the following: Item une tente tres longue et estroicte de telle a broderie d’ymages et escripteaulx, faisans representation du Conquest d’Angleterre, laquelle est tendu environ la nefde l’église le jour et par l’octave des reliques (l). Not until the 1720 ‘s did scholars first find and appreciate the potential importance of this brief entry.

Saints, Tradition and Monastic Identity: The Ghent Relics, 850-1100

Ghent altarpiece

The extraordinary story ofthe Ghent relics was first told by Oswald Holder- Egger in an article published in 1886. During his work on part two of volume 15 of the Monumenta Germaniae Historica Scriptores series, which Holder- Egger had just finished, he had come across the hagiographie literature produced at the abbeys of St Baafs and St Pieters in Ghent.

The Reordering of Society in Medieval Provence

Les_Très_Riches_Heures_du_duc_de_Berry_octobre_detail

“Here, some pray, others fight, still others work …” {}). “Since the beginning of time, mankind has been divided into three groups, men of prayer, farmers, and warriors” (2). Appearing between 1024 and 1031 in the writings of Adelbero, bishop of Laon, and his cousin Gerard, bishop of Cambrai, these two statements constitute the first fully developed expression of a tripartite, or more accurately a trifunctional conceptualization of European society.

A Feast for the Eyes: Representing Odo at the Banquet in the Bayeux Embroidery

Bayeux banquet

This paper will therefore investigate Odo’s role in the banquet as a way to ask larger questions about how patronage has been portrayed in the literature on the Bayeux Embroidery as a whole.

Kingdom, emporium and town: the impact of Viking Dublin

Archaeology from Viking Dublin

In recent years the precise location and nature of Viking Dublin have been much debated. It is now generally accepted that there was a longphort phase from 841 to 902: a period of enforced exile from 902 to 917, and thereafter a dún phase.

Book Review: The Rhyme of King Harold

rhyme of king harold

The Rhyme of King Harold is an entertaining way to learn more about the flip side of the Bayeux Tapestry and getting in touch with your Saxon roots.

CONFERENCES: Count Hugh of Troyes and the Crusading Nexus of Champagne

Image of the First Crusade

This is my summary of a paper given at the Institute of Historical Research at the University of London.

The Childhood of William the Conqueror

William the Conqueror

Duke Robert died when William was seven leaving him to rely on other men to rule his duchy until he came of age. These years were fraught with peril.

The 1066 Norwegian Invasion of England in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle

Battle of Stamford Bridge. From 13th century Anglo-Norman manuscript.

The goal of this paper is to understand how the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle portrays the Norwegian Invasion of 1066 and how they characterize the Norwegians, particularly the figure of Haraldr Harðráði.

Monastic Space and the Use of Books in Anglo-Norman England

Canterbury - Eadwine Psalter

My summary of a paper given at the Institute of Historical Research on: Monastic Space and the Use of Books in Anglo-Norman England.

Chivalry, Feudalism, and Source Criticism: The Writing of Medieval German Military History

bachrach

A paper from the 49th International Congress on Medieval Studies

Did the Vikings reach Madeira?

Madeira in 1462

New research about mice on Madeira suggests that the Vikings may have visited the Atlantic island 400 years before it was colonized.

The Battle of Clontarf – then and now

clontarf then and now

HistoryHub and University College Dublin have teamed up to create two-part video series to commemorate the 1000th anniversary of the Battle of Clontarf.

Is the story of the Battle of Clontarf more fiction than fact?

Battle of Clontarf

The Cogadh Gaedhel re Gallaibh is considered one of the most important sources about the Battle of Clontarf in 1014. However, new research is suggesting the tale is based more on the Trojan War than on historical sources.

Trinity College Dublin marks anniversary of Battle of Clontarf with conference and exhibition

clontarf

This year marks the 1000th anniversary of the Battle of Clontarf, one of the most important events in Irish history.

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